HMS Prince of Wales: British sailors arrested for public intoxication & unruly behaviour during outings

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Three Royal Navy sailors have been arrested for public intoxication and unruly behaviour by the Dutch police

Three British military personnel from the £3.5 billion aircraft carrier HMS Prince of Wales were caught for public intoxication and unruly behaviour during outings in Rotterdam that included excessive drinking, reported Daily Mirror. Patrols by UK Navy military police, civilian law enforcement, and local security have been increased in the port city following a number of alcohol-related incidents involving British sailors over a three-day period. According to the report, one member of the Royal Navy was arrested on Monday night after allegedly becoming intoxicated and engaging in an altercation with local authorities, which resulted in police using a taser to restrain him. Charges against him include public intoxication and causing injury to two local police officers. While additional British sailors were reportedly involved in the incident, they were not apprehended. The initial detained sailor will face prosecution under Dutch law. On the same evening, UK military police arrested a second Royal Navy serviceman for public intoxication and alleged possession of a suspected hard substance, presumably cocaine, according to Dutch Military Police. The material is being tested, said the report. The two incidents are separate, with the latter currently in the custody of Royal Navy Police aboard HMS Prince of Wales and expected to face military legal processes in the UK.

Three Royal Navy sailors from HMS Prince of Wales have been arrested for public intoxication and unruly behaviour by the Dutch policeThree Royal Navy sailors from HMS Prince of Wales have been arrested for public intoxication and unruly behaviour by the Dutch police
Three Royal Navy sailors from HMS Prince of Wales have been arrested for public intoxication and unruly behaviour by the Dutch police | AFP via Getty Images

On Wednesday, a third member of the warship's crew was caught for public intoxication and failing to provide identification, but he was freed without penalty after paying a fine and returning to HMS Prince of Wales. None of the three are officers; they are described as "junior sailors" from lower levels aboard the ship, all dressed in civilian wear when apprehended. Dutch Military Police spokesman Captain Mike Hofman told the Daily Mirror: “We are treating these incidents as serious because they are unusual. We will be stepping up patrols in the city, along with local civilian and Royal Navy Police from the UK to prevent further incidents.”

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The 800-strong crew of HMS Prince of Wales has taken part in the pan-European NATO exercise Steadfast Defender, the alliance's largest wargaming operation since the Cold War. The carrier, the second in the Queen Elizabeth class of Royal Navy aircraft carriers and the sister vessel to HMS Queen Elizabeth, is scheduled to depart on Monday. It can support up to 48 F-35B Lightning stealth multi-role fighter jets, Merlin helicopters, a large detachment of 250 Royal Marines, and attack helicopters. Sources told the outlet that anybody discovered in possession of heavy narcotics would be expelled from the Royal Navy. The UK Ministry of Defence is expected to publish a statement later this evening.

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